Beautiful Life

Hey child up and go; A big world is out there waiting for us to live in every day. Outside you will find, there is love all around you; Takes you, makes you wanna' say; That it's a beautiful life and it's a beautiful world and it's a beautiful time to be here, to be here, to be here. -Fisher

Friday, September 5, 2008


Those of you that know me, know that I don't actually fight with children over food. I found that it is not necessary. They may not eat everything I'd like them to, but not one child under my care has ever attempted to starve themselves when offered food!

That being said, I thought I'd met the pickiest eater ever when Lizzie came into my life 16 years and 5 months ago. At 18, she eats far more variety than I ever would have predicted when she was 2 and her medley consisted of hot dogs, cheese toast, corn and peeled grapes-peeled, not because that was the only way she would eat them, but because that was the only way Paul would serve them, but that's a whole other post! And, I thought the strangest thing was Noah's love of tomatoes. I mean LOVE of tomatoes. That boy will eat an entire tomato, like an apple, and he'd do it everyday if we had enough tomatoes around here! He sneaks tomatoes like other kids sneak cookies....very weird!

But Claire has managed, in the last three months, to win the award for strangest and pickiest eater in our family! When we received her, we asked for a list of things she ate and favorite foods. The answer we got from her foster mother was that she ate steamed buns (dough filled with a meatball concoction and steam cooked), rice and dumplings as her main food everyday. That she liked eating fish and meat and got them with fresh vegetables everyday. Foster Mom listed her favorite foods as "green vegetables, eggplant, fresh kidney beans and meat but she never eats animal livers" (Yuck! Good thing!) "Her favorite fruit is bananas, apples, watermelon and so on" and for Breakfast, "milk, cookies, cakes, congee. She is not picky". Those were her exact words. "She is not picky"!

Okay, this seemed like it would be helpful! Right? Well, it was for a few days. The first few days she ate just about anything we put in her mouth...except meat. Oh yeah, and vegetables, fruit, milk. Okay, the only thing she ate was noodles, dumplings and steamed buns! At least the noodles had egg in them and the dumplings and buns had meat in them. Of course, she usually pulled the meat out first!

The most fun thing was to watch her eat chicken congee at Lucy's restaurant in China. Everyone got a kick out of it because she had a talent for taking a mouthful, chewing it up, swallowing all the rice and then spitting out all the chicken pieces! By-the-way, congee is just soupy, overcooked rice. Oh! And she smells her food before she eats it! Did I tell you that part? She only does it when she doesn't recognize the food now, but she did it every time when ate in China. Is it cultural? I didn't see the adults doing it.
Since getting her home we have been able to establish that she does not like meat or fish....except when Papa Stroud makes ribs and then that's all she eats! I don't get it. Or, when Meme Stroud makes crab cakes. Maybe she doesn't consider crab as meat? "Loves green veggies" yeah, right! We've tried beans, peas, broccoli, salad greens, spinach, asparagus....well, then I stir-fried some zucchini and that did it! So for, teriyaki stir-fried zucchini and raw cherry tomatoes are the ONLY veggies she will eat. We've been a little more successful with fruit. She has eaten strawberries, bananas, apple, grapes, blueberries (if Papa Shaw lets her pick them herself) and on ONE occasion, she ate watermelon. But, just because she eats something today, does NOT mean she will eat that same thing any other time in her life! Trust me! And, just because she won't eat it today doesn't mean she won't love it tomorrow! I can not figure this chick out!

Will she eat rice? Yes and no. Will she eat noodles? Yes and no. Dumplings? Your guess. Her staple seems to be Flax-n-Oats oatmeal, which she will eat every morning....if I make it right! Paul made it one morning and she wouldn't touch it. Ate a pop-tart instead! Loves boiled eggs...this week. She ate bagels and cream cheese for breakfast every morning while we were "on vacation" in St. Louis this summer but won't touch one here at the house. Give her a cheese stick and she's a happy girl, but yogurt has good and bad days around here. And, don't waste your time ordering CHINESE FOOD because she doesn't like that any better! Have you ever seen a child that wouldn't eat a chicken nugget? I just scratch my head! She's a mystery.

But she's happy and healthy and she knows how to use those chop-sticks when she does eat!

1 comment:

The Source said...

She's funny! I love the photo of her using her chopsticks so expertly. I have some good eaters, too, but each has their own likes & dislikes. My daughter won't eat hot dogs. One twin won't eat cheese or anything with cheese on it, in it, under it or beside it. He WILL eat wasabi, sushi, picked okra, tomatoes right off the vine and bananas are unsafe around him. I have to hide them or they must be consumed instantly. Kids are funny!